In Case You Missed It: Here’s What The President Promised In His State Of The Union
President Donald Trump gave his first State of the Union (SOTU) address on Tuesday, January 30. The president outlined the benefits of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act at the beginning of his remarks, introducing owners and employees of an Ohio manufacturing firm that he said would benefit from the new tax law. He ended his remarks with a discussion of foreign policy. In between, the president addressed immigration, infrastructure, domestic energy development, and health and labor policy. Here are some of the specifics:
- Trade. President Trump promised, “The era of economic surrender is over,” and said his administration would “fix” trade deals that had not worked to the benefit of the United States. He also said his administration would “negotiate new” trade agreements. The president reiterated his administration’s position that trading relationships should “be fair and to be reciprocal.” Click here to read the fact sheet on trade that the White House released just before the SOTU. The fact sheet did not mention the Section 232 steel or aluminum investigations, but it did note that the Trump administration has conducted 82 major antidumping and countervailing duty investigations, a 58 percent increase over 2016. After the SOTU, some steel company CEOs wrote to President Trump urging him to use the Section 232 investigations to “implement a remedy that is comprehensive and broad based.”
- Infrastructure. The president asked Congress to pass legislation that would “generate” $1.5 trillion in spending to rebuild U.S. bridges, roads, ports, airports, and other infrastructure. The president promised, “Every federal dollar should be leveraged by partnering with State and local governments and, where appropriate, tapping into private sector investment—to permanently fix the infrastructure deficit.” President Trump also said he would reform the federal process for approving infrastructure projects, reducing the time it takes from 10 years to one or two. The White House is expected to release an infrastructure outline in mid- or late February.
- Immigration. On immigration, President Trump outlined a four-point plan that would reform the nation’s system by: 1) providing a pathway to citizenship for 1.8 million individuals who came to the United States illegally when they were young; 2) curbing that ability for immigrants to sponsor family members’ entry into the United States; 3) ending some visa programs; and 4) improving border security by appropriating $25 billion to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.
The president also called for paid family leave and for new programs to improve workforce development, job training, and vocational schools.